APG: Defending Champion Thailand Conscious Of Malaysia's Threat

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SEPANG – Defending champion Thailand is conscious of host Malaysia's threat to seize its ASEAN Para Games (APG) overall title when the biennial Games kick offs from Sept 17 to 23.

It's chef de mission, Pitak Polkhan admitted that Thailand would face a tough challenge from Malaysia to retain the overall crown at the ninth edition of the Games for differently disabled athletes.

Except for the inaugural edition when host Malaysia won in 2001 and Indonesia emerged victorious in 2013 in Myanmar, Thailand had claimed the overall title in all other six occasions.

This year, Thailand is sending a 291-strong contingent, after having made preparations since March.

"Due to budget constraint, we could only start preparing in March. We will try to emerge as overall champion again, but I cannot reveal our medal target," he told reporters when met during the contingent’s arrival at Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), here, today.

 Thailand emerged as the overall champion at the APG in Singapore two years ago after winning 95 gold, 76 silver and 79 bronze medals, while Malaysia finished third with (52-58-37) behind Indonesia (81-74-63).

At last year's Rio Paralympics, Thailand claimed the 23rd placing among 159 participating nations after winning six gold, six silver and six bronze medals, while Malaysia was in 36th with three gold and a bronze.